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October 2011 Newsletter

Introduction

DreamHost is a suitless working environment, and we intend to keep it that way.

Except on Fridays. Fridays...don't make any sense.

Over the past month "Formal Fridays" at the DreamHost offices have hit critical mass. This weekly, elective dress-up day sees rational, non-addled employees eschewing t-shirts and denim in favor of suits, ties, and cocktail dresses.

This really happens.

We've had the air, water, and food tested, and are no closer to finding the reason for this insanity than we were when it started several weeks ago.

For me, the best part of Formal Fridays is later in the evening when they turn into Fancy Fridays, a weekly ritual in which I bust out classy crystal barware and use it to administer a steady stream of top-shelf spirits to myself, pinky raised, with a hearty "Well done, Old Boy. Well done."

There's also...
• Finagle Fridays where we try to smuggle things into prison
• Flagellum Fridays where we try to pick things up with a lasso
• Flaming Fridays where we set things on fire...or make new friends
• Fecal Fridays where we do our best work in a bathroom environment
• Fallopian Fridays where we get ourselves or someone else pregnant
• Futurist Fridays where we talk about things that may or may not happen

Be it Formal, Fancy, Flatulent, or Funky, one thing is certain - Fridays are best celebrated with an F word.

Simon Says... (Written by CEO Simon Anderson!)

I'm 3 months in. Yep, it seems like MUCH longer. But there it is. And so it shall be.

So "what's changed?" in the world of DreamHost you may ask. What's different...better...show me the goods! Well the answer is quite a lot of invisible and out there things that add up to, well, a number more than 1 and less than 1,000. Take a guess and the closest to the number wins an iPad on me (just tweet @DreamHost or @DreamHostSimon with the number you guess before 11:59pm Pacific Time October 9th and I'll announce it October 10th).

So back to the thread on what's happened and happening. Well the founders and team here at DreamHost have built an awesome platform for your web success. And I see my job as kind of adding the cherry on top. Um, I think. Hmmm, never thought of myself as a cherry. Maybe I need a better analogy.

Anyway, I've been focused on figuring out what improvements we can make to our services and the way we support them to make YOUR lives easier. So I've focused the team on uptime and making meaningful ongoing improvements to our infrastructure so we continue to be one of the best value and highly reliable web hosts out there. That means dollars as well as smart sense - so we've spent over $1 million dollars on new hardware over the last 3 months alone. We've also been rolling out some enhancements to Virtual Private Servers that will improve your ability to choose the right memory limits for your needs, and allow you to burst through them for a short period and be notified that you might need to up your resource allocation.

On the support side of things, you will have seen our improvements to call backs with a one hour window, and behind the scenes our tech support team are refining the way we handle your support requests to ensure we are super speedy to reply, and lightning fast to resolve them. This also includes upgrading our team training as we continue to support the broadest range of dev frameworks and open source apps. We're constantly looking at emerging open source software apps to consider for one-click installs, so continue to point us to them through the "Suggestions" area of your account control panel:

Web Panel: Suggestions

Going forward, we're going to be making some big enhancements to the way we serve and support web designers and developers through a new program that we plan to launch in January. I've been amazed at the number of loyal designers and developers that put their clients on DreamHost, and I think we can do a lot more to make working with us easier and more efficient. If you're a designer or developer and you'd like to be part of shaping that program, just email us at partners@dreamhost.com and we'll include you in the planning process.

Don't forget to tweet your number between 1 and 1,000 and mention @DreamHost or @DreamHostSimon!

Best,
Simon
@DreamHostSimon

(Now back to Brett!)

Meet Us In Boston. Right now!

We've been a big supporter of the OpenStack project for a while now.

OpenStack.org

To date we've supported OpenStack with firm, encouraging shoulder squeezes and multiple code contributions.

I know what you're thinking. You're thinking "I am SO SICK of hearing about you guys and OpenStack, DreamHost. Why don't you just get a room already. Seriously. We're all sick of the tension. Just make a move."

Maybe you didn't notice, but we're both wearing the same clothes we had on yesterday. High-five.

This month we put our money where our mouth is and became an official sponsor of the OpenStack Design Summit and Conference in Boston, October 3rd-7th. Which, by the way, happens to be RIGHT NOW.

OpenStack Conference & Essex Design Summit, Fall 2011

We'll be participating in a panel of service providers Thursday at 1:45. Friday at 2pm we'll take the stage to discuss Ceph filling the block storage void in OpenStack and give an update on the current progress of Ceph's integration into OpenStack.

We'll also be hosting a coding challenge (with prizes!) at the DreamHost table located inside the Developer Lounge during the Summit through October 5th.

Dell will also be demonstrating the Ceph barclamp that we've written for Dell's Crowbar OpenStack deployment system at the Dell table just a stone's throw from our own in the Developer Lounge.

And finally, we'll probably be dragged into a few spontaneous rounds of Magic: The Gathering. Not that we've ever played before...but when this many nerds get together, anything can happen.

Yep, still hiring.

Would you consider yourself a spiritual person?

That was a rhetorical question - I can't actually hear you.

I'm only asking because DreamHost is, currently, very holy.

As a matter of fact we have over a dozen holes that need filling!

...and I have a pun-generating machine that needs destroying.

DreamHost Careers: Join Our Team!

Our HR people (we have those now!) are very proud of our new hiring microsite; it's full of great reasons to send in your resume including employee benefits, office photos, and comprehensive job listings.

We're looking for new hires in nearly *every* department, so if you live in California and have a pulse, there's a good chance you'll see at least one role listed that's right up your alley.

Whether or not you're *good* at the job isn't actually super important. You can sort that out later with your manager - I'm just trying to score a finder's fee here, Bro. Do me a solid on this one.

Guest Blogger Program

Can you write interesting things?

If the answer is no, keep at it, Champ. You'll get it some day.

If the answer is yes, that's great! Keep reading.

We'd like to start featuring YOU on the DreamHost Blog! And by YOU I mean the best part of you - your IDEAS! Your wisdom!

The DreamHost Blog

We're looking for a few guest bloggers to share content that might be of interest to readers of the DreamHost Blog. Share a tip, offend a few key groups of people, punctuate your text with wildly inappropriate photos - you know, the usual. Feel free to toss in a plug for your site, your blog, or whatever it is you're selling.

What's the catch?

First off, it would help if you were a current customer. We're hoping you'll pry open your skullcap and scoop out some knowledge that would be of some benefit to other *DreamHost* customers.

Maybe it's advice on how to use some aspect of our web panel more effectively.

Maybe you're a developer making clever use of the DreamHost API and want to show other people how to do the same.

Maybe you feel like you'd do an awesome job explaining the difference between running PHP as a CGI application vs an Apache module you crazy, crazy person.

All of these are good ideas. You know what are not good ideas?

• Writing about how to optimize a Microsoft SQL database.
• Investing in time-shares
• Putting cilantro in anything
• Getting mixed up in some work-from-home MLM scheme
• White chocolate
• Smoking

I'm getting a little off track here but I think you get the point.

If you'd like to participate, or if you've got questions, write us at blog@dreamhost.com and we'll hook you up!

Take our Survey, Win a Kindle Fire!

This month we're asking you about THE FUTURE!

What types of technologies or products would you like to see us support in...THE FUTURE!

Remember, I can't hear you right now so don't start jib jabbin' - save it for THE FUTURE in which you'll click a link and fill out a survey.

Guess what?

THE FUTURE IS NOW!

I've always wanted to say that. With a German accent, for some reason.

Take the DreamHost October survey and let us know where you'd like to see us focus our energies...in the future.

Take the DreamHost October 2011 Survey!

TWO lucky survey respondents selected at random will receive an Amazon Kindle Fire for their efforts.

The Kindle Fire is so NEW! Clearly, the iPad has been beaten by its newness. See what happens? Steve Jobs quits and Amazon takes over. Progress!

DreamHost 101: Registration Transfers

Newsflash - we host domains. Duh.

We also register them. You probably knew that too.

Many of our customers come to us after having registered their domain names somewhere else. And that's fine.

You may not realize it, but as a domain name registrant 99% of the time you aren't locked in to using your original domain registrar forever.

In fact you can transfer registration duties for nearly all of your domains to another domain registrar at any time. It's really just an administrative change, so changing domain registrars is even easier than changing web hosts!

And why would you bother? Whelp, some people prefer to have their domain hosting and registration combined on one bill. It's just one less bill you'll need to remember to pay, one less company you'll need to deal with, and one more thing we're happy to handle for you.

We can act as a registrar for over two dozen different top-level domains (TLDs).

We're a pretty great registrar, if I do say so myself. You can set your registered domains to auto-renew, expire outright, or simply have us send you an automated reminder when your expiration dates approach.

There's no hard sell, no junk mail, and no elephant slaughter involved!

Don't forget - we also include a FREE .com, .net, .org, or .info domain name registration for as long as you maintain an active hosting account with us. So if you're only hosting a single domain name with us and we're not the current registrar, you're paying us for a perk you're not even using! AND you're paying someone else for a service that you don't even need! Silly!

To transfer a domain registration TO your DreamHost account, just visit the Registration Transfers section of your control panel:

Web Panel: Registration Transfers

You could also use the same panel to transfer registrations *away* from your DreamHost account, but that's crazy talk. In fact, forget I said anything.

DHSOTMs

The DreamHost Site Of The Month is a coveted title reserved for a select few DreamHost customers. Past winners have gone on to do marvelous things that non-winners could only dream of. So they say.

As voted by you, the winners from SEPTEMBER are as follows...

The winner in the DESIGN and ORIGINALITY categories is:
Max Parr
"Max Parr is a Filmmaker and Photographer. These are his selected works."

http://maxparr.com/

The winner in the STRUCTURE, CONTENT, and OVERALL categories is:
Boulomma
"Branding, Logos, Brochures, Websites, and Mobile applications"

http://www.boulomma.com/

Congratulations to the winners!

Don't forget to cast your votes (and enter your own site) for the next round of DHSOTMs at

https://panel.dreamhost.com/index.cgi?tree=home.dhsotm

See ya next month!

See ya next month!
Brett D!

P.S. - Got a case of the Moody Mondays? Unsubscribe here:

https://panel.dreamhost.com/id/?tab=contact